Local students show their enterprise and work ethic

Conor O'Brady and Jason Lacey, Duiske College pictured with their award winning horseshoe wineracks at the Student Enterprise Awards in the Newpark Hotel last Thursday. Photo: Pat Moore.
There was a combination of innovation, enterprise and good old fashioned hard work on display at the county finals of the Student Enterprise Awards, held in the Newpark Hotel last Wednesday.

There was a combination of innovation, enterprise and good old fashioned hard work on display at the county finals of the Student Enterprise Awards, held in the Newpark Hotel last Wednesday.

Several awards were made to students in a number of different categories, as well an Overall School Award.

Alex Crossley from Kilkenny College won the overall senior category with his ‘Xley Aprons’. The Science and Technology award went to ‘Kilkenny Youth Events’, the website brainchild of St Kieran’s College students Liam Wallace and Michael Ryan.

‘Best Commercial Concept’ went to Duiske College students Conor O’ Grady and Jason Lacey. The pair collected horseshoes, cleaned them, sprayed them and welded them together to make wine racks. It cost them €25 to make 11, and they are selling well at €25 a piece.

The intermediate category was won by 3 T Tairgi – three students from Colaiste Pobail Osrai, Thomas McGrath, Thomas Morris and Thomas Mason. The junior category was won by students from Colaiste Pobail Osrai also. Enya Nic Pheaircín, Róisin Ní Mhaolmhuaidh, Siún Ní Chrualaoich came up with ‘Locker Dock’.

The student entrepreneurs will now be flying the flag for Kilkenny at the Student Enterprise Awards National Final in Dublin’s Croke Park in April. They will be judged on criteria such as innovation, market research, production, finances and business planning.

“Since last September, our student entrepreneurs have been setting up and running their own real-life businesses, learning important business lessons along the way,” said Fiona Deegan, CEO of Kilkenny County Enterprise Board.

“By promoting an enterprising culture in local classrooms, the Enterprise Boards are helping to support and nurture the next generation of entrepreneurs.”

The Student Enterprise Awards programme is run across three categories. Junior Category is for first year students; Intermediate Category is for second years and Junior Certificate students and the Senior Category is for transition year, fifth year, Leaving Cert, LCVP and LCA students.